Portland Beginner Piano Lessons

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Learn Beginning Piano in inner SE Portland

The Beginner and Music Lessons: Learning the piano (and music in general) can be great when you have the right teacher, and awful if you have a teacher that doesn’t fit your style. At my studio, your style is adapted to. Beginners love to pick their own material and their own songs. When a beginner comes to a lesson and chooses the song, I pick elements of the song that suit the student’s capabilities, and makes sense to the student, musically. Students often practice along to videos, CDs and MP3s to “get a feel” for things. Lessons with media are more fun!

Topics Covered: Music theory, songs, rocking out, playing to songs you like. Scales, intervals, basic rhythms and melodies, chordal structure (triads) and more. Fundamentals of theory. Whatever you like. Polyrhythms are emphasized for beginning piano studies for commercial music (meaning rock, jazz, funk, soul, R&B, blues piano, etc), and sight reading is emphasized for beginning classical piano students.

Music Technology: Music technology is incorporated into all lessons, especially for piano and keyboard students. How do you record a song and burn it onto a CD? What is a dynamic microphone? What is MIDI? What is a synthesizer? How do I sequence music? How do you record a drum pattern onto a CD and multi track keyboards over it? All of these topics and more will be covered.

Music Theory: Key signatures and sight-reading music notation for those whom wish to read; simplified and easy-to-use music theory for those who wish to rock. Playing in key. Scales, modes; chordal theory and rhythms. Intervals, and interval-related ear training.  For vocalists of any sort and age, a capella interval vocalization and creative improvisational composition is encouraged – and possible.

Material and Application: You pick the music.

Instructor notes: I love teaching beginners. Read more about my attitudes regarding free play and improvisation. Many of my beginning students write their own songs. Kids get to do what they want. For more information, click here for kid’s lessons.

You Should Bring: Yourself, and your friends/parents. You’re welcome to use one of my keyboards/pianos. I don’t care if you bring your lesson papers back. I prefer that you know the material and leave the papers at home. When we are learning what we love, we memorize it better. That’s why students of all ages guide their own lessons.

Genres: Beginner guitar students with complex musical tastes have a larger gap than most students. Remember what Ira Glass said (see the right sidebar?) and try to pick a simple song to learn. You probably shouldn’t try to start by playing Slayer. Settle for the Beatles. If you are patient, in short time you will be able to cover your favorite music.

Be still and immovable; do not rush to the next level. Be stubborn about being a beginner. It’s a valuable time of your musicianship.

-Amanda Machina

squirrel at whirling squirrel dot com

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2 thoughts on “Portland Beginner Piano Lessons”

  1. hi,

    saw you on twitter, can you help teach me how to make beats with my korg electribe??
    Thank You!!!!

    1. Most definitely! I emailed you back – I know you personally and I love your music.

      Talk soon,

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A music teacher in Portland Oregon